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Friday, July 13, 2012

First Birthday : SOB.

A post all about my first birthday party! It was Carys who was having the birthday, but this party was done by me for me. (Because yes, technically it was for Carys, but let's be honest: she didn't care. At all. She would have been happy with a cardboard box and a piece of watermelon. The decor and DIYs and all that shit? Totally just to make me happy. Because I like doing it.) We survived enjoyed a year of parenthood! Damn straight we were going to party!

It didn't turn out exactly the way I wanted it to in my head, mostly because we completely and totally ran out of time. I.E. I was decorating as people were there. Yes, I was taping down tablecloths as people were sitting at the table. CLASSY! Most of that wasn't my fault though...you can blame my brother, who promised to help but showed up a half hour late to the party (rather than the hour early he said he'd be) and the person with the folding tables, who showed up fifteen minutes before the party was to start. In the long run, though, none of that mattered. Yes, I would have had a few more things to take pictures of, but literally NO ONE but me cared. And in the end, even I didn't. She had a great time, the food was good, and it still went great.  And thank god I had it at a local park, because I can't imagine how crazy it would have gone if I hadn't been restricted by the location (if you don't believe me, you should see my Pinterest inspiration board!).

It started with her invite (below) and went from there. I didn't have a theme so much as an idea.  The original colors were aqua, yellow, and pink, but a lot of things I was finding also had green, so I added a bright green to the mix as well. And chevrons. I've been in love with chevrons for about a hundred years now, so I wanted to include them.

There were a few things that I did that turned out really well and that I really am proud of and want to mention specifically.

1. Time Capsule
I've already had about a dozen people ask for the files from this, so it must be a hit! I was looking through my baby book and started asking my mom about what she thought the world would be like in the 2000's back when I was a little baby....and thought how fun it would be for Carys to be able to see that, straight from the people she knows and loves.  So I had a ton of fun putting together this time capsule idea.

Edit: I had a lot of requests for the files, and I couldn't spend as much time as I wanted to fulfill all the requests, so to hopefully balance providing them and not spending all my time on them, I set them up for sale at an Etsy shop. You can check them out here: 1. Custom Colors  2. Pink, Yellow, Aqua   3. Blue, Green, Yellow

Designed in Photoshop.

The prediction cards were designed in Photoshop and printed on store-bought 3x5 index cards. There are a mix of Carys-specific predictions and general predictions about life in the year 2032.

The frame is from Hobby Lobby; I spray painted the inside yellow.  The pics are from July '11, October '11, January '12, April '12, and June '12 (labeled with little pieces of paper I cut into flag shapes).  The "C" and the "1" are just cardboard letters from Hobby Lobby covered in felt (I used spray adhesive to attach the felt).  And yes, how classy is it to have a trash can in the background? Such is the risk you take when your party is in a public park pavilion. 

2. Timeline Banner
I love this so hard, but probably no one else even noticed it. Oh, well. I spent a good deal of time staring at it and sobbing and wondering where the time went.

Paint chips for the background color; hung on a yellow ribbon 
with mini-clothespins purchased at Hobby Lobby.

4. Her Outfit
DAMN STRAIGHT SON, I MADE THIS SHIT.  I knew right away that I wanted to get a striped chevron fabric in the birthday colors. However, the universe didn't know that I wanted that and the only thing that was remotely close wouldn't be released until August. So I did what any normal, rational person would do and designed my own and had it made by Spoonflower.  I knew exactly the outfit that I wanted - this pinafore from Smashed Peas and Carrots. And I knew I wanted to make it. However. Except. But.

I'd never sewn before.

I mean, a button here and there. But nothing REAL. Luckily, my aunt had just dusted off her sewing machine and was itching to get back in the sewing game, so she threw herself at my disposal. I made a test outfit out of an old sheet, then moved onto the real thing. And I am SO PROUD of it. I love how it turned out. I can see all the little imperfections, of course, but still: I MADE IT! (Note: It was 6-12 mos, but I didn't alter the length of the pattern, as I wanted it to be more like a tunic than a dress. I did raise the curve under her arms a bit, and cut a slice off the back curves so the "swoops" that crossed over would show more.

The ruffle butt bloomers were a bit more difficult. I couldn't find a good (free) pattern online, but in the end one of my friends had one that she let me borrow.

Test outfit on the left from pillowcase; starting the real thing on the right.

Outfit being modeled by Mr. Bear.

I wish I had a really good picture of the bloomers on her, 
but she crushed the ruffles pretty much immediately.
Freshly sewn bloomers (they aren't actually wonky; I just didn't lay them out very straight here).

So those were the big three things.  I did other things, too, like made her birthday hat, spray painted the high chair yellow, cut fabric table runners, spray painted the cupcake stand, spray painted some vases yellow, made the cupcake toppers, and made a little mini banner for the high chair (which I forgot about, sob).  My sister made the cupcakes and her little smash cake, Chris and my uncle grilled, and my mom, mother-in-law, and aunt helped with the side dishes. Family is a wonderful thing.

The birthday hat before I glued it to the headband and 
sewed ric-rac along the bottom; the beginnings of her birthday banner. 
Also after taking this picture I realized that the "1" was crooked on the hat and I fixed it.

All right....now for the photo bomb. Literally.

Of course, you can't really see the cupcake toppers that I slaved for hours on,
but they're just two triangles of felt hot glued to toothpicks. Cupcake holder 
was on clearance at Target for like $3, and I spray painted it yellow.

 Her cupcake topper is leftover fabric from pinking the seams of her bloomers tied to a paper straw cut in half, with felt triangles hot-glued onto it. Super ghetto. But cute! The glitter candle is from Target. Keeping in line with my hippie rep, we did a "healthy" smash cake using the blueberry-banana cake recipe from here.  There was a little bit of buttercream frosting on it, so she wasn't TOTALLY denied joy and happiness.

Mason jars from Amazon; Daisy cut lids from Etsy, straws from Hey YoYo. These were a HUGE hit and looked really cute full of lemonade and juice.

I have no good pics of these in action, but these are the fabrics (from Fabric.com) of the table runners. Two tables had yellow, two had blue, and all had pink bowls full of ice and water in the center (50 cents from Target, woot!). And yes, I shoulda ironed them.

Headband is from Etsy.  Shoes are from See Kai Run. Did I mention I made the dress?

Running around like a maniac + a million degrees + humidity = completely ruined hair + no makeup = someone should have given me a brush. And a mirror.

Yes, that is a yard sign. I got it for free when VistaPrint messed up my invite order. YAY!

Had my decorating plans been realized, there would have been lots of 
streamers, balloons, and paper pom poms in this picture. 

Birthday hat was made by me out of paper, with ribbon for the top, and hot glued onto a headband. She's not too sure about everyone looking at her.

Really this is just another picture to show off the outfit.

There goes her "1" balloon. I was really sad about this. 
I was looking forward to bringing it home so she could play with it!

These turtles are totally humping, right?!?!?!

She is terrified of this book.

A hundred new toys and she just wanted to play in the water.

The infamous Pottery Barn chair that about 70% of our baby friends 
got for their first birthday as well (this is from mom and dad!). 

"Roar!" goes the baby.

So even though it didn't go quite as well as I would have hoped in terms of preparation  and even though it wasn't quite the photo-ready event I imagined in my head, it was still a rousing success, because let's face it - we all survived her first year!  That alone is enough to make it a winner.


  1. You went from not sewing... to sewing THAT! How awesome. Love everything about this party.

  2. Where did you find the time! Great job, and Happy Birthday, Carys!

  3. Great job! Just wanted to let you know I linked to your blog since I stole your paint chip photo banner. :)


  4. Hey I love the time capsule idea! I wanted to do the same for my little girl but can't quite read what is on the cards and what I should put! Could you link a file to it or post a bigger picture that would be so awesome! Thank you!

  5. Hi Koryn! I've had a lot of requests for them, and I was spending a lot of time fulfilling them, so I set up a listing at an Etsy shop for them.

    Custom colors - https://www.etsy.com/listing/112913819/birthday-time-capsule-kit-digital-files

    "Girl" colors - https://www.etsy.com/listing/112914524/birthday-time-capsule-kit-digital-files

    "Boy" colors - https://www.etsy.com/listing/112914779/birthday-time-capsule-kit-digital-files

  6. Organizing an awesome party is all. You can hire an event planner to do the job for you. That will give you more time with your family members. Try it out, as they are very professional worker.

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